Tom Tit Tot

Tom Tit Tot
   This, one of the most famous English *fairytales, is an analogue to 'Rum-plestiltskin' in the *Grimms' collection. A peasant girl is taken as wife by a king, on the understanding that she will spin five skeins of flax per day for a month, as her mother had boasted she could; a 'small little black thing with a long tail' performs the task for her, on condition that he will carry her off if she cannot guess his *name by the end of the month. By chance he is heard boasting 'Niminy nim-iny not, My name's Tom Tit Tot', so she is able to 'guess' correctly, and the imp disappears. The story was contributed to the Ipswich Journal on 15 January 1878 by Mrs Anna Walter-Thomas, who recreated it in full Suffolk dialect from her memory of how her nurse had told it to her about 25 years before; it has since been many times reprinted, usually with the dialect reduced.
   In 1992 Michael Wilson recorded an excellent variant from a 13-year-old girl in Plymouth, based on how her Liverpool grandmother told it; the task is to spin wool into gold, which is done by 'a little green imp', who a year later takes the girl's baby as the forfeit, but has to restore it when she discovers the name (Wilson, 1997: 255-8).
   ■ Original text in Briggs, 1970-1: A. i. 535-9; Philip, 1992: 111-17. Modified text in Jacobs, 1894/1968: 5-9.

A Dictionary of English folklore. . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Rumpelstiltskin — Infobox Folk tale Folk Tale Name = Rumpelstiltskin |400px Image Caption = Illustration of Rumpelstiltskin from Andrew Lang s The Blue Fairy Book , ca. 1889 AKA = Tom Tit Tot Päronskaft repelsteeltje Aarne Thompson Grouping = 500 Mythology =… …   Wikipedia

  • Max Magician and the Legend of the Rings — Infobox Film name =Max Magician and the Legend of the Rings caption = director =Kevin Summerfield producer =Kevin Summerfield writer =Kimberly Gough starring =Timothy Stultz Ken Mitzkovitz Erika Ann Steven Barry Prince Greg Coale Lee Savage Kevin …   Wikipedia

  • Caldecott Honor — The Caldecott Honor is a citation given by the Association for Library Service to Children of the American Library Association (ALA). The Caldecott Honor is given to worthy runners up for the Caldecott Medal, a higher honor. Though the Caldecott… …   Wikipedia

  • Joseph Jacobs — For other people named Joseph Jacobs, see Joseph Jacobs (disambiguation). Joseph Jacobs Born August 29, 1854(1854 08 29) Australia Died January 30, 1916(1916 01 30) (aged 61) United States Occupation …   Wikipedia

  • Classifications of fairies — In mythology and folklore, fairies are classified in a variety of ways. Two of the most prominent categories, derived from Scottish folklore, are the division into the Seely Court and the Unseely Court. William Butler Yeats, in Irish Fairy and… …   Wikipedia

  • fairytales —    This is the usual English term for a group of oral narratives centred on magical tests, quests, and transformations, which are found throughout Europe and in many parts of Asia too. They are defined by their plots, which follow standard basic… …   A Dictionary of English folklore

  • Fairy — Infobox Paranormalcreatures Creature Name = Fairy Image Caption = Take the Fair Face of Woman… by Sophie Anderson Grouping = Mythological creature Born = 105BC Died = NA Possibilities = AKA = Fay Fae Faerie Wee Folk Good Folk Fair Folk Country =… …   Wikipedia

  • Jewish name — For the article on Hebrew given names, see Hebrew name.The Jewish name has historically varied, encompassing throughout the centuries several different traditions. This article looks at the onomastics practices of the Jewish People, that is, the… …   Wikipedia

  • Edward Clodd — (1 July 1840, Margate, Kent ndash; 1930) was an English banker, writer and anthropologist. He cultivated a very wide circle of literary and scientific friends, who periodically met at Whitsun gatherings at his home at Aldeburgh, Suffolk. Although …   Wikipedia

  • Hob (folklore) — A hob is a type of small household spirit found in the north and midlands of England, according to traditional folklore of those regions. They could live inside the house or outdoors. They are said to work in farmyards and thus could be helpful,… …   Wikipedia